Modular construction is a rapidly expanding sector of the construction industry.
Today it is being used thought the world in residential, commercial and retail developments.
The method of modular construction has been around since the 1800s, when portable iron clad homes were constructed in the UK and transported by ship to Australia.
Modular construction is the process whereby multiple modules are constructed in an offsite factory, which are later transported to the construction site for assembly by a builder.
The advantages of modular construction include shorter construction times, greater cost certainty and superior sustainability benefits.
Here we look at four modular construction projects from around the globe:
Atlantic Yards B2 Modular – Brooklyn, NYC
B2 Modular, a 32-story building is the first residential tower of the 22-acre Atlantic Yards project developed by Forest City Ratner Companies in Brooklyn.
International construction company Skanska will be constructing the tower at a cost of US$117 million.
B2 will comprise 363 residential units, 181 of which will be low, moderate and middle-income homes.
930 modular units to be assembled by skilled workers at the Navy Yard facility and trucked to the construction site, where they will be raised by cranes, stacked on each other and attached to the building’s steel frame.
Completion of B2 is expected in 2015, and the entirety of Atlantic Yards should be built-out by the 2020s.
Little Hero – Melbourne, CBD
Located in Melbourne’s CBD, Little Hero was designed by Nonda Katsalidis of Fender Katsalidis Architects.
Constructed by Hickory using the Unitised Building (UB) system, this laneway development includes 63 one and two bedroom apartments and duplex penthouse residences atop a strip of high-end retail tenancies, restaurants and cafes.
This project is notable for being the first full scale commercial application of the UB system which resulted in construction time reductions of more than 6 months.
Victoria Hall Student Accommodation – Wolverhampton, UK
Designed by O’Donnell East Architects, Victoria Hall is a student accommodation project located in Wolverhampton in the UK.
It comprises 657 en-suite student study bedrooms and 100 studios.
The 24-storey student dormitory is made up of 805 modules and was built in 27 weeks.
At the time of completion it was the World’s tallest modular constructed building.
Due to the nature of modular construction this project was completed a year earlier than it would have been if traditional construction methods were used.
One9 Apartments – Melbourne, Moonee Ponds
The One9 Apartments were developed by The Moloney Group with architecture by Amnon Weber.
Comprising 34, one and two bedroom contemporary apartments, One9 was built using 36 Unitised Building modules in just 5 days.
The One9 project focuses heavily on the environmentally sustainable aspects of the building.
With a 6 star energy rating, the environmental footprint is significantly reduced. Features include double glazed windows, solar hot water panels on the roof, grey water recycling and many others. Below is a video displaying a time lapse of the install.
The Urban Developer, 30 July 2014